In the mad rush of guild announcements last week (all over but for the ACE Eddie awards which will curiously be announced after the Oscar nominations this year) we missed this one: The Cinema Audio Society. While Top Gun Maverick has long been marked the frontrunner for the Best Sound nomination it has formidable competition in the sound spectacle department. Nominees, comments, superhero split, and Oscar stats after the jump…
MOTION PICTURES – LIVE ACTION
All Quiet on the Western Front
Avatar: The Way of Water
Top Gun Maverick
Usually when a straight drama makes it in this list you know it’s landing a best picture nomination but this year’s list is free of them. All five are the typical kind of movies the sound guild likes even if they aren’t snagging Best Picture nominations: war films, franchise action spectacles, and musicals. All 5 of their nominees are also on the Oscar shortlist alongside Babylon, Black Panther Wakanda Forever, Everything Everywhere All At Once, which all now look like longer shots since they weren’t nominated here. The final two Oscar shortlisters for Sound are in the other CAS categories.
In the past ten years CAS has generally lined up 4/5 with the eventual Oscar nominations. It went like so:
2021 – Spider-Man No Way Home replaced by Belfast at the Oscars
2020 – Trial of the Chicago 7 replaced by Soul at the Oscars
2019 – 3/5 kind of year The Irishman and Rocketman replaced by Ad Astra and 1917 at the Oscars
2018 – A Quiet Place replaced by Roma at the Oscars
2017 – Wonder Woman replaced by Blade Runner 2049 at the Oscars
2016 -3/5 kind of year Doctor Strange and Sully replaced by Arrival and 13 Hours at the Oscars
2015 – The Hateful Eight replaced by The Martian at the Oscars
2014 – Guardians of the Galaxy replaced by Whiplash at the Oscars
2013 – Iron Man 3 replaced by The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug at the Oscars
2012 – 3/5 kind of year and odd for other reasons too – The Hobbit An Unexpected Journey and Zero Dark Thirty replaced by Argo and Life of Pi at the Oscars. But then Zero Dark Thirty was nominated in Oscar’s other sound category at the time (Sound Editing) and won that other category in a tie with Skyfall! If you were watching that night it was very exciting since ties are rare in Oscar history.
As you can see there’s not a lot in the way of patterns since there’s an exception to almost every broad generalization about what kind of movie gets replaced by what other kind of movie. Nevertheless, the truest broad generalization is that the guild voters like the sound of superhero movies more than Academy voters do. That might mean that The Batman is the must vulnerable of their five guild nominees during Oscar voting (right now) … but on the other hand Batman is Oscar’s favourite superhero by a country mile since they’ve nominated his long running franchise in several categories over the years.